Beneficial Design with Assistive Technology

When planning classes to take this coming academic year, please consider the Winter Quarter course:


Perspectives in Assistive Technology

Perspectives in Assistive Technology (ENGR110/210) is a Winter Quarter course for students from every discipline that explores the design and use of technology that benefits people with disabilities and older adults.

You should consider taking this course if:

  • You are interested in learning how technology is being used to help people with disabilities and older adults
  • You would like to apply your knowledge and design skills to benefit others
  • You want an opportunity to engage in a team-based project in the local community that has social relevance
Photo of student using a power wheelchair at the VA
Photo of a student at the Motion & Gait Analysis Lab engaged in a motion capture task
Photo of a student with a brain-controlled robotic grasper
Photo of a student having a close encounter with a PR2 robot at Willow Garage
The course consists of semi-weekly lectures by experts working in the assistive technology field and individuals with disabilities, field trips to local facilities, and an assistive technology faire.
Students pursue projects that address problems faced by users of assistive technology by brainstorming, fabricating, and testing a prototype. For students whose schedule does not permit working on a project, lecture-only options are offered. ENGR110/210 is a certified Service Learning course that satisfies the optional course requirement for the BSME degree and is approved for the Program in Science, Technology & Society, the Learning, Design & Technology Program in the Graduate School of Education, and the Program in Human Biology.

Enrolled students are:

  • Exposed to the engineering, medical, and social issues facing engineers, researchers, entrepreneurs, clinicians, older adults, and individuals with disabilities in the design, development, and use of assistive technology

  • Engaged in projects that exercises team working skills and applies an engineering design process to address difficulties experienced by individuals with disabilities and older adults

  • Provided an opportunity to interact with users of assistive technology in the local community along with health care professionals, coaches, and project partners

  • Given chances to enhance their critical thinking and communication skills, with specific emphasis on in-class discussions, report writing, and project presentations

  • Encouraged to use their skills and design expertise to help individuals with disabilities and older adults increase their independence and improve their quality of life

The teaching staff invites both undergraduate and graduate students from all majors and backgrounds to enroll in Axess and attend the first class session in the Winter Quarter of 2015.

To learn more about this course, visit its website or contact the instructor, David L. Jaffe, MS.

Photo of student wearing brain-computer interface
Photo of an exoskeleton used surrounded by students
Photo of four students engaged in a brainstorming exercise
Photo of the Whill wheelchair surrounded by students at the Assistuve Technology Faire